Every match we seem to play these days is a crucial game for us, and none more so than today’s league game at Craven Cottage.
The games we have to win are against teams below us in the league, and Fulham fits that criteria today, and even though the game is away, and our away form has been less than impressive this season, nevertheless the goal is to get all 3 points this afternoon.
Funnily enough as we read what Fulham manager Lawrie Sanchez says today, that’s Fulham goal today too – all 3 points.
Sanchez is a good manager and he will have his team revved up and ready to go for this game. Lawrie can motivate his players and has shown that many times before in his career. So this will not be an easy game for Newcastle, but we do nevertheless have a good chance today. This will depend greatly on how our defense plays, since that has been our weakness this season, especially away from home.
We almost expect an unchanged side from the last couple of games so that we’ll again have our back four looking like:
Beye Taylor Rozehnal N’Zogbia
David Rozehnal made a bad mistake for Birmingham City’s goal last week but recovered quite well for the rest of the game, and we think he will be given another start this afternoon. David is a good player and certainly has a first class attitude, and we think will partner well with young Steven Taylor at the back. We’d like to see Jose Enrique brought in as a starter at left-back. But we don’t think Sam will do that, since he seems to prefer Charles at left-back right now. We’d like to see Jose in so Charles N’Zogbia can be released to play on the left wing with the very impressive James Milner starting on the right.
NUFC.COM is reporting today that our failed attempt at Ewood Park to keep a clean sheet means that we extended that sequence to 20 Premiership away games without a shutout, since a scoreless draw at Manchester City in November 2006. And including all league and cup games, that total becomes 23 since a scoreless draw at Frankfurt – also in November 2006.Â However, our last clean sheet away at Craven Cottager came in November, 1946. 🙁
So what do we make of those statistics? Obviously we are due a clean sheet today at Craven Cottage. 😀
On the Fulham side of things, Simon Elliott, Jimmy Bullard, Ian Pearce, Lee Cook, Brian McBride, Kasey Keller and Philipe Christanval are all on the injured list, and the referee for today’s game will be Howard Webb.
This is the team we expect Sam to field today:
Beye Rozehnal Taylor N’Zogbia
Geremi Butt Barton Milner
Subs: Harper, Enrique, Edgar, Viduka, Emre
That looks a decent team, although as we said we’d prefer to see Charles N’Zogbia and James Milner on the wings with Enrique in at left back.
So we’ll go for a win – say 1-0 – a clean sheet and a win for the first time since September 1st this year.Â What do you think?
We welcome Fulham fans to our site today too.
Comments are very welcome.